Friday, January 26, 2007

It's cold out there...

It is truly cold outside - with the wind chill factor about -5F (-20.5C). Walking the dog seems more like getting tied to a post and horse whipped than enjoying a bit of exercise or lending the dog a bit of our time. Brrrrr! It's been such a busy 4 weeks, with 3 birthdays (not including our neighbor Laura's 6th on the 17th), chanukah, solstice, christmas, new years, our anniversary (if you didn't hear mention of that, it's beacause it probably wasn't mentioned haha!), and then all the normal run of the mill stuff - JAC out of town for 2 weeks, JAC sick, me sick, Ori sick, Beca's after school activities, even painting the bedroom (which begins this weekend). I feel like I need to breeeeeeeathe. I haven't worked seriously on my writing for weeks and weeks now, although I have been using the notebook and sketching out scenes. Productive, but not satisfying. I seem to be in a low tide emotionally, and having a good long look at why seems like too much work right now. I have little to complain about - truly I have NOTHING to complain about, but I can always find some thing that needs work lol - other than Jerry being sick so often. Poor fella just has had a terrible time of it these last 5 yrs, and it sure isn't getting any easier! I frequently worry about his cough, which is remarkably deep and painful sounding. Hopefully that means it's breaking up in there, and he'll be well again soon! Now it's a coin toss - who goes skiing tomorrow (in this frigid weather!) with Beca...I have a feeling I'm going to lose this one.

Frozen's bloody cold out there! All the snow is frozen, and the wind bites off your nose just before it freezes off your toes! BRRRRR!!

More than genetics link these two.

We got the new quilt this week, and have finally picked paints for the walls in the bedroom. Hopefully that will finish up this coming week. YAY! Something more than bare white walls at last!

Current mood: dour

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Jan 20 2007 Ori's BIRTHDAY!!!

They sky shades broke through winter's cold, he turned two, and cried, "big cookie mama", we danced.

Oh I can hardly believe this day has arrived, my little babe turned toddler is TWO!!! The last time we'll ever have a baby here in this home that is OURS. The next one will likely be Beca's, and I hope that's a LOOOONG ways off. :D This morning he woke up and got to have first breakfasts, then opened up a gift. A remote controlled duckie!
The kids played with that for a while, then had second breakfasts, Daddy made french toast! Then another gift - a talking parrot! They have been highly entertained by these two gifts already.
Beca has an awful time doing her math work, which she has to finish in order to get to sleep over at Grandma and Poppy's later today, so we've broken up the hilarium team for the moment and getting chores done.

Here's his cake - mom made the cake, dad iced it. TEAMWORK! Later in the afternoon we went to grandma and poppy's time share near Jimminy Peak to have a little dinner party with them and celebrate our baby boy's birth day. I had a terrible cold all weekend long, it was not fun for me, but it was nice to get to celebrate his birthday, which would have been much downplayed if we'd stayed home.

Some gratutious pics of the birthday celebration:

The Berkshires - so starkly beautiful during these short winter days. Sunset was just before 4:30.

Mary enjoyed his magnetic maze as much as O did!

New trucks and a Thomas train from Grandma...he knew right what to do with THOSE!

BIDAY CAKE (also known as BIG COOKIE)

Current mood: nostalgic

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


What things that I see are surreal, and what, if any, will last? The future - ten days, ten years, ten decades - it seems so pervasively indecisive. Today he loves Pooh Bear (the one Didi gave Beca years ago), with the wind up key in his side that plays the Winnie the Pooh theme song gently, a real music box inside. Yesterday it was the football trick-or-treat bag (left over from months ago, bad mama!). I can so easily let go of yesterdays 'thing' but I want todays to last and last! It's fine with me if he needs to kiss Pooh goodbye before he leaves for school. Even at fifteen! "Bye Pooh! Bye Mom!" and out the back door to meet Josh half-way to catch the high school bus at the round-about. Somehow tossing around the trick-or-treat football just doesn't carry the same cuteness weight with me. I do feel optimistic that he will still melt my heart, induce forgiveness with his eyes and a hug, and lean his warm young body into mine to share our energies. Hopefully even unto my passing.

Jerry and O have both had colds, JAC worse than O. His asthma really kick up a notch and makes us both a bit worried that pneumonia is brewing or stewing or ??? inside those hard working lungs of his. My poor sweet big fella. He really tries to take it like a champ, but it's just not easy to feel so crapped out.

Tonight I need to go out. I haven't had any out to myself time (other than to Beca's class yesterday) for about two weeks, and it really shows. I put my dinner on the table last night, and Ori grabbed the plate and it dropped to the floor. I was hungry, and it was the last of dinner from the pan. I really got angry, and shouted, and told him that not ALL the food in the house is for him, and to keep his paws to himself. Then I walked away. Time OUT mommy. He's two (almost), and it's just not fair for me to lose it w/him like that. He totally doesn't get it. It doesn't happen often luckily. He's usually easy to be patient with. But it's really REALLY time for me to get OUT of here for a few hrs. So I'm going to head out early, and then meet up with the leadership committee for BF1 and try to hammer out some plans. Lots going on THERE!

Other stuff:

Orin is starting to become much more verbal. I couldn't even list all the words he knows well, at this point, maybe about 75-100. He does come up with some cute new combinations of stuff, but nothing like what Beca used to come up with. She'd make up words and change things around to make it seem like it SHOULD be a word, but of course it's just her super imagination and auditory perceptiveness. He doesn't seem to have those same skills, but he's much better at listening and cooperating. And better at *shooting* people with everything from crayons to sticks and fingers. What's up with THAT!

Beca has been working hard in school, says Sandy, since Winter Break ended. We have pretty much decided to keep her at WHMS for 4-5-6, because to be honest as much as I love people like Deb and Theresa, I think their kids can really run wild (D's more than T's), and there isn't much expectation that they LEARN how to self correct their behaviour. I love the WHMS really focuses on getting kids to learn for themselves how to control their own behaviour, how to learn, how to study, how to form study groups and how to work in them. That will be one of the new challenges for Beca; she learns very well in a one-on-one situation, even with another student as the other 'one', but gets somewhat overwhelmed about her 'place' in a larger group setting, and very easily distracted when she studies by herself. So moving beyond the friend-to-friend work time will be a big leap (mentally, emotionally, and physically) for her. Best to prepare myself early for that! Friday there is a luncheon
at the school for parents interested/concerned about the upper el. stuff, so Brig has agreed to baby sit O while I go, hopefully with JAC in tow.

I haven't found the time to write in eons. I'm feeling rather blue about that. Just getting OUT is hard these days. JAC has been sick a lot, and with O sick too, I haven't felt very good about taking off for a few hours to write. JAC never 'minds' when I do, but the house is twice as trashed as it normally would be, because he just doesn't have the energy to chase after them, or pick up even the smallest pillow? Ok, maybe it's inclination. Tonight I shall have dinner ready before Aikido, and we shall go and do that before I leave. Then I'm off duty till long after bedtime. Well, I think Perfect Blend closes at 10. But whatever. Time off is good time.

Ori's 2nd birthday is this weekend. Mary and Bob have taken the condo at Jiminy for the weekend, Sat - Monday. We'll be there on Sat for skiing (hopefully, hard to imagine skiing with such cold cold conditions and no actual snow, but I'm sure theyve got some coverage), but w/no skiing we'd still go and meet them at the lounge or something. They do try. I will bake a cake and bring something for dinner (what?!), bring a wrapped gift or two (hopefully Beca will have finished her scarf), and some few party decorations. I have some balloons, hats, tooters, and festive napkins. Hopefully that's enough for him at this age. I know it's enough for ME at MY age!

Friday night we're having Vernie and DB and the girls over for dinner. MUST clean this house. And figure out what to cook! Yikes! I'm thinking Braai with wild rice pilaf, potatoes au gratin w/that nice goat cheddar I got, and some veggies - beans and glazed carrots maybe. It's DB's birthday on Sat, too. :D

General mood - stoically optimistic. America will vote for the BEST candidate regardless of ethnicity. REGARDLESS of ANYTHING! The BEST candidate is best for the majority, and the majority will will WILL see that. I am going to reiki on that long and hard today.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Hopeful frustration

Pictures might say a thousand words, but I'm ready for some words! Obama has decided to run - I thank the universe, the goddesses, the gods, the mothers and sisters and aunties and the men who have helped him, shaped him, fought for him, lifted him. For his courage may offer us a shred of hope. He is taking on extraordinary risk to offer America (North and South) the opportunity to recoup some of the incredible losses we've incurred over the past decade. Our reputation for being generous, wise, compassionate and creative have all been unceremoniously cremated. I can't say as I've lived through a great presidency, but I think the last decent one was Jimmy Carter! Goodness, that is a loooong time for a suburban girl to wait. I'm used to a significantly more immediate gratification from the world, my selfish self says that we can figure out a way to share our collective wealth without reducing further our collective poverty, nor by indulging in someone else's money. We don't need oil money to produce the same amount of food, or transport some of our excess to Zimbabwe, Ethopia, Haiti, or Chechnya. We don't need to kill our soldiers to offer a hand in peace. We don't need to separate more families, lose more children, maime and twist more 'peace officers' in the name of Democracy. Democracy itself may not, in fact, be a useful tool for some places. There may, in fact, be places in the world where OUR way doesn't work at all. Where we need to tolerate, respect and acknowledge, not understand. Where social norms create opposing morals, where customs bang into our standards of individual freedom and political might, we need to find shelter and comfort in being allowing. As I do every day watching my children bang into my own limits and expectations, it is likely that we have banged into others, and that others shall bang into us. And until we eliminate discrimination against pregnant women, until the human body - male and female - offers not beauty but beautiful function, until we eliminate infant mutilation from our own society, I honestly feel we have NOTHING to criticise in others. So long as we condone the use of force, whether at home or abroad, in the taming of societies monsters, we have shriveled to the size of our worst enemy - hate. Someday we may get it right, and hopefully Obama will help lead us down that road. Like MLK Jr., he will not say anything NEW, but he will say things people don't want to hear, will push and rebel against, and things that are true.

Link to Obama's running speach:

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Childhood, TNG.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

lots of pictures!

Since I've been on the hunt for awesome pictures of our every day life, I have a LOT of pictures! Here are some that didn't make it into the flickr prjoect, but I love them for representing our life here on earth. The owies, the sourpusses, the blunders and food and love that we have and share.

My silly boy, he surely does love his bed! He just goofs and hangs out and reads and loooves this bed. He was born in it, maybe he knows this?

Wet wet morning. At least we could be living in Roberts Creek if all we're going to get ia a mild wet winter!

Our beloved Zami. He loves his hideaway bed under the counter. I worry, because the microwave is atop the counter, but JAC seems to feel he's in no danger. I sure hope not!

He doesn't laugh a LOT, but his laughter is just absolutely from the guts. A big deep chuckle that is far bigger than his not quite two year old self.

Comfort food to the MAX. Spaghetti bolonese. Even the babe knows this is the good stuff lol!

Feeling her oats, Beca tried to handle the fire in the backyard. Too bad it was SCORCHING hot. Lesson learned. Ouch!

my sweet angel made me an angel out of the dusting of snow this morning. There's something special about early morning angels.

O Cool. It burned bright and cold this morning, felt like WINTER!

Ori in the baber shop.

Shave and a haircut. TWO CENTS! (or twelve dollars plus tip lol)
Current mood: decisive.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Jan 9

Ori got his hair cut today. I'm still mopping up my tears. I decided to do a montage of the NEW Ori - I just need to get used to him.

Current mood: grateful.

Sunday, January 07, 2007


So Karen and Kathy are both committed to 365 photos in the coming year. So here's my start to the year!

Jan 1 2007
The sous chef

Jan 2
Pretty boy!

Jan 3
Queen Mamatifa

Jan 4
Conehead Daddy

Jan 5

Ori found mamas hat at bedtime

Jan 6

Boys sharing the big chair

Jan 7

New living room set up

Jan 8
Today Ori learned how to open and close the scissors. He's been using them as 'rippers' mostly. He practiced for a long time (and created quite a lot of recycling for next week!) very patiently. My little baby is sure growing up!

Jan 9 see above for the full rendition

Because this will get archived at the end of the month (no matter how hard I cry), I've moved the project to flickr. I'll post that address later on, but thanks to everyone for checking in!

Post holiday festivities

30th December 2006 First Night Albany has been turned into Winterfest! Beca ran in the jingle jog again, which was a blast as usual. She made a little friend - Amanda - and enjoyed the run. After the awards ceremony, which we won nothing at, there were a ton of activities for us to enjoy.

This tall fellow made his way just about everywhere! This is across from City Hall.

These fellows were AMAZING on dual trampolines.

Ori conked out for an hour or so...good thing, too! He was awake for the important bits!

We saw a wonderful circus show, which gave all the children a chance to try out plate spinning, juggling, and devil sticks! Beca thoroughly loved that, and we ran into loads of WHMS and FUUSA folks there! WAHOO!

Plate Spinning

Devil Sticks

We had a BLAST at the Pillay's New Year party! JAC was busy dancing the night away, and Ori made it until 11pm! Beca was dragged home at 1:30am much against her will. We popped poppers, drank tooters, and ate like bandits all the goodies everyone brought.

Since then, JAC and have enjoyed some meals with friends, and at Brig and Brian's, JAC and I made a pact. When I lose 20lbs, he will go for a colonoscopy! So I'm more motivated than ever to get on the bandwagon and begin to drop some weight. Vernie and I are going to try to work together on this - she's joined the YMCA, which I am considering whether we should do again. I feel I need to get my motivation levels higher, begin the process without committing that much money. But if I do find myself truly motivated and losing weight w/out having a better place to go to support my efforts, then I would consider re-joining. I'm pretty disapointed with myself for having left off my efforts there last year.

So no promises, but my goal is 20lbs, and a lot toner in the next little while. I'm excited - the warm weather is a wonderful way to keep active, and I've started using some of the tapes I've collected over the years. Yoga, aerobics and kickboxing, to name a few! Since I started trading with other mamas online, I've gotten mysefl a bunch of these kinds of things. So - Cheers! Here's to a happy and healthy 2007!!!

Current mood: remnants of festive mixed with a pinch of wistful.

Chanusolstimas with a birthday thrown in for fun.

I can't believe how lax I've been here. Man o man. I deserve a squanking! Well, all thoughts of s&m aside, it's been a really fun and busy holiday season. We also had some really nice, and much needed, down time.

We started out the holidays with Chanukah, a fun and bright holiday for us. We spent the first night stuffing ourselves full of latkes and playing dreydle, exchanging gelt and lighting candles. The kids each got one gift each night, just to keep the excess to a minimum. Because we moved so much around this fall, we lost track of the Chanukias (the menorah deadicated to Chanukah) so Beca and I made a new one out of clay. It worked perfectly until JAC located ours.

Second night of Chanukah was the anual Sasloff Holiday Party, which was a ton of fun, as usual! We all got to meet little August Doria, who is just as cute as a baby could possibly be! What fun! It was great to see everyone! We missed Arty Barnes, but enjoyed the visit of the Chanukah Mensch, the champagne punch, the latkes, the social stim.

Chanukah finished up with wonderful presents from Poppy and Nana, fun stuff from JAC and I, and another round of latkes on night 7.

Solstice on the 21st waxed bright and clear. We had a small candle lighting ceremony, and each sent off our wishes for the new, growing season. It was much downplayed from last year, from what I had sort of hoped we might be able to put together. It was a busy week; last week of school, JAC in and out of town, Ori and Beca briefly sick (Beca missed the last day of school). So mostly we were grateful for good health, each other, a decent night of sleep.

Dec. 23 2006 We jumped in the car right after befest and drove straight to Manhattan. Mary's Birthday was fun! We went over to Bryant Park to see the skaters, ride the carousel, and check out the funky stalls of goodies (bought some deeeeelish chocolate santas and some fairy lights) and enjoyed the mild weather.

Mary, Beca, JAC and Ori at the skating rink

The carousel at Bryant Park

We enjoyed a few good NYC meals before everyone split up and did their night time activities. Beca, Mom and Mark went to see Alvin Ailey's wonderful composit performance. Beca had an awesome time, and Mom seemed to enjoy the performance, and her time w/her youngest child and oldest grandchild.

Beca and the Birthday Girl

Jerry and I went to see Erragon; fun, but mostly great to have some QT with my sweetie.

Dad and Ori hung out at the apartment. O not being in the mood for sleeping (huh?!) they played well together. The next day he was a bit grumpy, but it was worth it to have the 24th at home with JAC and the kids (for me anyway!).

Christmas eve day was nice and mellow. We got the gifts all wrapped after the kids went to bed, and stuffed them under our tree.

Christmas Tree 2006

Christmas morning brought excitement and enjoyment - the thrill of the search for the stocking (I was last this year!), and the excitement of discovery. Everyone got stuff they asked for, and some they didn't!

Ori enjoying the 'Stocking Experience'

Beca checking out a funky dinosaur

Christmas Day was spent delivering goodies to our neighbors, opening gifts, lazing around watching movies, and taking leisurly walks around the neighborhood. Oh, and PLAYING! We got fun games to play, clothes to try on, make-up to figure out, and tool boxes to fill! Yay for Christmas! It's like a big birthday that we all get to share! We had a lovely big ham for dinner with all the trimmings. JAC enjoyed it the most, I think, but we ALL had a very merry (if a bit rainy and NOT white) Christmas.

Beca got walkie talkies from Uncle Ken and Didi!

And Ori got a Bob the Builder tool belt and hard hat!

Orin in his new Red Dirt Shirt from Uncle Ken and Didi's trip to Hawaii

Santa left us with some 'bangers' - little clay balls that sparkle and POP when you bang them together. FUN!

Beca is always up for dress up stuff! And this chef's hat is just what our budding sous chef wanted!

Audrey Roes brought the children funny face books that Ori just LOOOVES!

JAC took off the 26th, Boxing Day, which gave him (and us all) a nice long 4 day break. All in all, we survived the Holiday season without a hitch, although it was all too short.